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Restarting the Riots – A Month of Not Much

2006.10.24. 01:41 | riotsinhungary

On October 23rd rioting started for the second time on the streets of Budapest. This, however, was preceeded by a month that the international media considered way too boring to care about. Oh, how right they were... Anyway, if you really want to know what happened in Hungary between the end of september and the end of october, here is the lowdown.

- After a couple of nights of streetfighting and a succesful siege to the building of the Hungarian State Television, the riots slowly fizzled out.
- Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsány refused to step down and wowed to complete the agenda of economical reforms his government had started.
- A colourful coalition of extreme right-wing loonies turned Kossuth square in front of the Hungarian Parliament into their permanent camping ground, where they decided to stay until Gyurcsány would give in and leave.
- On the local elections of October 1st the governing social-liberal coalition candidates suffered painful defeats all over the country. Their only consolation was Budapest mayor Gábor Demszky, a liberal, hanging on to his seat by a very narrow margin.
- After the local elections the main opposition party, the right-wing Fidesz declared that the people had chosen to live without Gyurcsány, and that they would hold daily rallies on Kossuth tér until the socialist PM would finally stand down.
- As the days passed, things got even more boring. The loonies camped. Fidesz rallied, carefully trying to keep their distance from the loonies. Gyurcsány and his government tried to go on as if nothing had happened.
- Despite the peace and love on the surface, everyone knew that October 23rd would bring a new round of rioting.

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